Tag Archives: hobbyists

NAN 2016: Day 2

After the excitement of day one, I sort of just… floated… into day 2 of NAN. The Day 2 divisions are OF Performance, CM Halter, and AR Halter. In addition to showing my horses, I was proxy showing Erin’s amazing string while she was judging other classes.

My day was a little quieter since I wasn’t showing performance, but I stayed plenty busy keeping track of the various halter classes. In between, I oogled the entries in the OF Performance division.

Showers setting up their entries in OF Performance

Showers setting up their entries in OF Performance

Erin's incredible grumpy pony winning Champion Other Pure/Mix Pony. ES Sir Kix-a-lot was customized by Emilia Kurila.

Erin’s incredible grumpy pony winning Champion Other Pure/Mix Pony. ES Sir Kix-a-lot was customized by Emilia Kurila. He was also champion in his workmanship class!

Mackenzie Purdy's beautiful Catarina winning Champion Lusitano/Andalusian.

Mackenzie Purdy’s beautiful Catarina winning Champion Lusitano/Andalusian. Customized by Tiffany Purdy.

The indomitable Canterbury Trendsetter by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig, owned by Diana Patterson.

The indomitable Canterbury Trendsetter by Sarah Minkiewicz-Bruenig, owned by Diana Patterson.

FT Misty Memories owned by Kirstina Fortune

FT Misty Memories owned by Kirstina Fortune

While I know that performance is my strong suit when it comes to model showing, I have less confidence in my customizing and painting. Earning top tens at NAN in breed and workmanship was thus extra special and exciting. The caliber of models at this show is breathtaking.

My first win was also my biggest for the day- Mr. L. B. Scuttlebutt won Reserve Champion UK Pony!

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Next, Pollyanna Plaudit took a top ten in Other Stock.

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After the CM and AR breed classes were finished, the workmanship divisions started. My wins in workmanship are particularly sweet because all three of them were in classes judged by the esteemed Leslie Kathman. Leslie is an accomplished equine artist and a published expert on horse color genetics. For her to deem my work worthy of a rosette was a huge honor.

Salty Captain took a top ten in the Bay/Black Other Scale class.

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My wee foal Hovito won top ten in Other White Spotting Pattern.

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And finally, my sweet Pollyanna Plaudit went two for two by winning a top ten rosette in Stock Type Appaloosa. Leslie writes extensively on the intricacies of appaloosa patterns, so this was probably my favorite moment of the day!

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And I wasn’t the only one having a great day…

Tiffany wearing all of the rosettes won by Diana in the CM and AR divisions. Diana's stack of plaques was equally as impressive, but not as wearable!

Tiffany wearing all of the rosettes won by Diana in the CM and AR divisions. Diana’s stack of plaques was equally as impressive, but not as wearable!

NAN 2016: Day 1

We arrived in Kentucky on Sunday evening, and Monday was a blur of errands and preparation. Suddenly it was Tuesday and I was on my way to my first NAN.

The first day of NAN is OF Breed Halter and CM/AR Performance. I was excited and nervous. The hall was enormous.

The show hall

The show hall, with the very first classes being called.

There were twelve show rings, with multiple classes loading at one time. Thanks to some wonderful volunteers, it wasn’t too hard to follow the classes- we had an announcer keeping us constantly updated on the status of each class, and a volunteer manning a huge white board that listed which classes were in what rings.

The oh-so-helpful white board

The oh-so-helpful white board

For me, day one was all about performance. The day started with harness and then several costume classes. I didn’t have anything until the fifth class, so I did as much prep as I could for my upcoming classes and then wandered around nervously looking at all the entries on various tables.

Erin's four Quarter Horses winning top tens in their breed class.

Erin’s four Quarter Horses winning top tens in their breed class.

Finally my first class was called! I had two entries in Scene/Other Performance: Troy Soldier doing horse agility (well, in this case, mule agility) and Puns N Roses doing a liberty demonstration.

One of the awesome things about NAN is that after every class, the top tens placings are announced (in random order) and then they announce the champion and reserve. I love these announcements because you get to hear all the fun names, it’s exciting listening for your horse, and you get to cheer for your friends.

Scene/Other Performance was a big class with some very impressive entries. The announcer listed off the top tens… and the final name she called was Troy Soldier! It was a wonderful moment.

Erin snapped this picture of me, gleeful at winning my first ever NAN Top Ten.

Erin snapped this picture of me, gleeful at winning my first ever NAN Top Ten.

The awesomeness just continued from there. In the next class, Jumper/Cross Country, my old standby performance horse Nightfox won a top ten with my new Star Wars themed jump.

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Meanwhile in the other ring, I was setting up my hunter over fences entry with PHF Richard Squared, my beautiful CM Seabiscuit that Tiffany gifted to me earlier this year. When the winners were announced, I was stunned to hear his name announced as Reserve Champion! One of Tiffany’s horses won Champion. Wahoo!

Thank you Tiffany!

Thank you Tiffany!

I love showing performance so much, and getting to do so at NAN, with so many of my friends, with the finest judges in the hobby and the stiffest competition… it was a blast. I was stunned and excited and proud as my entries continued to win top tens as the day went on.

Jaime - Top Ten Other English

Jaime – Top Ten Other English

Puns N Roses - Top Ten Stockwork with my new cows

Puns N Roses – Top Ten Stockwork with my new cows

Meanwhile Erin was garnering ribbons in both CM/AR performance and OF breed halter…

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And Tiffany was kickin’ butt in performance with her trademark flare.

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After a full day of showing we were down to the very last class- CM/AR Western Riding/Reining/Dressage. I had two entries in this class, both PHF Richard Squared and Puns N Roses. To my joy they were both announced as top tens. I was walking over to the table to disassemble my setups when they announced Puns N Roses as the Champion of the class!

I was so completely stunned, and then dizzy, and then I actually thought I was going to pass out. Folks were clapping and congratulating me and I had to sit on the floor until my head stopped spinning.

This is the face of someone who is trying to play it cool but actually cant stand up or speak coherently.

This is the face of someone who is trying to play it cool but actually can’t stand up or speak coherently.

Talk about a grand finale to an amazing day!

Packing up and heading back to the hotel is all a blur…I was so happy and hungry and excited. I have learned so much in the last few years- from my obsessive research on breeds and events, from countless blogs and tutorials, from my amazing mentors-turned-friends… and this day was in many ways a culmination of all of that.

And this was only Day One!

My performance horses with their winnings

My performance horses with their winnings

Holiday Saddle Raffle

At Sweet Onion Live earlier this year I got to admire some amazing mini scale tack by Grace Ledoux of Stage Left Studios.

SOL GL - dressage

I was amazed by her attention to detail and how itty bitty she was able to make her strap goods.

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I really wish I’d had more time to stare and take pictures (these are all her pictures, not mine!) but I was a bit crazy showing in halter and performance while judging the Youth division. I won’t be doing that again, trust me!

Since meeting Grace, I’ve been following her blog with enthusiasm. And I was very excited on Friday when she announced that she has teamed up with her friend and fellow tack maker, Anne Yager, to do a holiday saddle raffle!

SOL GL - harness

Even better, all the money raised in this raffle will be going to charity. It’s a win-win! The greedy part of me wants to keep this hush hush so I have a better change of winning on of the awesome saddles (I keep waffling on which I want more!)

Luckily, that part of me is overcome by my love of all things tiny as well as charitable giving. So I want to share this with as many folks as possible! Anna and Grace set a goal of raising $50, which they have already surpassed. How cool would it be if they could raise $100?

You can read all the details on the raffle in Grace’s blog post. That post and several others on her blog and on Anna’s blog show many more photos of the two saddles up for grabs. Go buy some tickets!

SOL GL - horse bot

This photo doesn’t showcase Grace’s tack so much, but it sure showcases her creativity! Isn’t this just the coolest Other Perf entry you’ve ever seen? She had documentation for the Horsebot and everything.

 

Begin Again

I put this blog on official hiatus last January when I realized that work, moving, and starting at a new barn were keeping me too busy. My models and supplies were put away in preparation for our move, and I spent my weekends at the barn teaching lessons or at home packing boxes.

moving boxes

Helper cat is helpful

We moved into our new home in February. Painting, cleaning, unpacking, and organizing kept us busy. In April my dream came true and we had a studio built into a nook. I eagerly documented the process so I’d be able to share it here.

finished studio

My new studio

At the end of April, I got sick, and I didn’t get better. Once again I found myself turning to models as a mental escape from frustrating exhaustion and depression. I couldn’t ride, but at least I had performance showing goals to work towards in the few hours a day I wasn’t sleeping.

So although I’d meant to start blogging again after we moved in, I didn’t. But I worked toward getting better. By the end of the summer I was feeling well enough to attend a live show. By September I was riding again. Today, I think I’m more or less back to normal, health-wise.

Despite the illness, it’s been a great year. We love our new condo and our urban life. I’m back to my regular hours at work, tackling new and exciting projects. I’m riding regularly and falling in love with a little dun gelding. I’ve had some great hobby successes and have exciting goals for the future.

Sweet Onion Live 2014

Sweet Onion Live 2014

And as of right now, I’m blogging again! I’ve been keeping up with the other hobby blogs during my absence from the blogosphere, and I am constantly excited, inspired, and in awe of other hobbyists’ dedication to sharing their experiences. I know I wouldn’t be where I am today in the hobby without this generosity, and I want to be able to reciprocate. I may not be up to blogging as much as I did before my hiatus, but at least I’ll be posting again.

I particularly want to give a shout out to a couple specific people whose blogging has been inspirational to me over the last few months. To Jennifer Buxton, whose dedication to blogging and willingness to share is unparalleled. To Sarah Minkiewicz-Breunig, whose honest and heartfelt post about her depression and her hobby journey resonated with me deeply- and made me want to buy an OF Breyer. And finally to Grace Ledoux, whose awesome hobby blog I recently discovered, whose mini tack is amazing, and whose thankful note pushed me to finally write this.

Thank you everyone! I’m excited to be back.

thumbs up jump 1 copy

Model Fun Day!

This Saturday Caryn hosted a little hobby get together. We all brought projects and hung out talking horses. It was pretty much the best thing ever. I got a ton of prepping done, Tracy painted medallions, Erin made saddle parts, and Caryn worked on customs and props.

Caryn working on her stablemate Arabian. Also pictured: delicious treats, mimosa, paint, ponies.

Caryn working on her stablemate Arabian. Also pictured: delicious treats, mimosa, paint, ponies.

Caryn was an amazing hostess, providing a veritable feast that kept us happily stuffed all day. Then she sent us home with chicken pot pies and cookies! We’re hoping to do more of these little get-togethers, but no one is gonna top this one for foodstuffs!

I got a ton done at Caryn’s, and then woke up today super motivated. I’ve got my resins and commissions in the works as well as a present for my trainer and a donation for NAN. There’s quite the herd in my In Progress cabinet. I hope to start putting color on them soon, and posting pictures of course!

Projects drying under the heat lamp

Projects drying under the heat lamp

Meanwhile, I still have photos from NW Congress to post (bored yet?). At the show I was lamenting that I couldn’t take enough photos, but processing and posting them all makes me feel somewhat differently :P Without further ado, here’s some of the pretties from the AR Mini division. Enjoy!

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Great Painting Tip from Jamie Baker

Jamie Baker is a great model horse artist, and is always very generous with sharing her techniques. She shared a brilliant (and so simple!) technique on Blab that I definitely plan to use.

Jamie Baker tip screenshot

This idea is a cool compatriot for another tip from Blab about visualizing colors, which I posted about previously.

Have I mentioned I can’t wait to start painting again?

This post needed a picture. Check out the butt on this gorgeous guy!

This post needed a picture. Check out the butt on this gorgeous guy! I know it’s the angle but… dayum. Cool reference for the pangare, too.

Tiny Things

My Christmas gift portrait cob now has hair! Said hair needs work, but she looks a lot better than last month when she had no ears and a wire sticking out of her butt…

Kettil Blacksmith is still in the pony hospital, but he’s recovering from Brokentailitis and will hopefully be ready to hit the show ring in a few weeks.

Progress!

Meanwhile, awesome hobby bloggers are busy making tiny masterpieces. EG of Last Alliance Studios cooked up some delicious looking sandwiches and Nichelle of Desktop Stables made a whole library of wee books. Seriously, the first pictures in these two posts will give you a real double take.